The word “electronic keyboard” describes any instrument which produces sound by the pressing or striking of keys, and uses electricity, in some manner, to facilitate the creation of that sound. Using a digital keyboard to generate music follows an unavoidable evolutionary line from the very first musical keyboard instruments, the pipe organ, clavichord, and harpsichord. The pipe organ is the oldest of these, initially designed by the Romans in the 3rd century B.C., and called the hydraulis. The hydraulis produced sound by forcing air through reed pipes, and was powered through a manual water pump or a natural water source like a waterfall.
From it’s first manifestation in ancient Rome up until the 14th century, the organ remained the sole keyboard instrument. It often did not include a keyboard in any way, instead utilizing large levers or buttons that have been operated by utilizing the whole hand.
The subsequent appearance in the clavichord and harpsichord within the 1300’s was accelerated through the standardization from the 12-tone keyboard of white natural keys and black sharp/flat keys seen in all keyboard instruments of today. The buzz from the clavichord and harpsichord was eventually eclipsed through the development and widespread adoption from the piano inside the 18th century. The best electric piano was actually a revolutionary advancement in acoustic musical keyboards since a pianist could vary the amount (or dynamics) in the sound the instrument produced by varying the force in which each key was struck.
The emergence of electronic sound technology in the 18th century was the next essential element of the development of the modern electronic keyboard. The initial electrified musical instrument was regarded as the Denis d’or (built by Vaclav Prokop Dovis), dating from about 1753. This is shortly followed by the “clavecin electrique” designed by Jean Baptiste Thillaie de Laborde around 1760. The previous instrument consisted of over 700 strings temporarily electrified to improve their sonic qualities. The later had been a keyboard instrument featuring plectra, or picks, that have been activated electrically.
While being electrified, neither the Denis d’or or the clavecin used electricity being a sound source. In 1876, Elisha Gray invented this kind of instrument referred to as “musical telegraph.,” that was, essentially, the very first analog electronic synthesizer. Gray discovered that he could control sound from the self-vibrating electromagnetic circuit, therefore invented a basic single note oscillator. His musical telegraph created sounds from your electromagnetic oscillation of steel reeds and transmitted them spanning a telephone line. Grey proceeded to incorporate an easy loudspeaker into his later models which was comprised of a diaphragm vibrating in a magnetic field, making the tone oscillator audible.
Lee De Forrest, the self-styled “Father Of Radio,” was the next major reason for the creation of the electronic keyboard. In 1906 he invented the triode electronic valve or “audion valve.” The audion valve was the very first thermionic valve or “vacuum tube,” and De Forrest built the initial vacuum tube instrument, the portable keyboard piano in 1915. The vacuum tube became an essential component of electronic instruments for the following half a century till the emergence and widespread adoption of transistor technology.
The decade of the 1920’s brought a great deal of new electronic instruments to the scene like the Theremin, the Ondes Martenot, as well as the Trautonium.
The following major breakthrough in the history of electronic keyboards arrived in 1935 with the creation of the Hammond Organ. The Hammond was the very first electronic instrument competent at producing polyphonic sounds, and remained so until the invention of the Chamberlin Music Maker, and the Mellotron within the late 1940’s and early 1950’s. The Chamberlin as well as the Mellotron were the initial ever sample-playback keyboards designed for making music.
The electronic piano made it’s first appearance in the 1940’s with the “Pre-Piano” by Rhodes (later Fender Rhodes). This is a 3 as well as a half octave instrument made from 1946 until 1948 that came built with self-amplification. In 1955 the Wurlitzer Company debuted their first electric piano, “The 100.”
The rise of music synthesizers in the 1960’s gave a powerful push towards the evolution of the electronic musical keyboards we have today. The first synthesizers were extremely large, unwieldy machines used only in recording studios. The technological advancements and proliferation of miniaturized solid state components soon allowed producing synthesizers that have been self-contained, portable instruments competent at used in live performances.
This began in 1964 when Bob Moog produced his “Moog Synthesizer.” Lacking a keyboard, the Moog Synthesizer was not truly a digital keyboard. Then, in 1970, Moog debuted his “Minimoog,” a non-modular synthesizer using a built in keyboard, and this instrument further standardized the appearance of electronic musical keyboards.
Most early analog synthesizers, including the Minimoog as well as the Roland SH-100, were monophonic, competent at producing just one tone at a time. A couple of, such as the EML 101, ARP Odyssey, and the Moog Sonic Six, could produce two different tones simultaneously when two keys were pressed. True polyphony (the production of multiple simultaneous tones that allow for your playing of chords) qhscvn only obtainable, at first, using electronic organ designs. There were numerous electronic keyboards produced which combined organ circuits with synthesizer processing. These included Moog’s Polymoog, Opus 3, as well as the ARP Omni.
By 1976, additional design advancements had allowed the appearance of polyphonic synthesizers such as the Oberheim Four-Voice, and also the Yamaha series CS-50, CS-60, and CS-80. The very first truly practical polyphonic synth, introduced in 1977, was the Sequential Circuits Prophet-5. This instrument was the first one to make use of a microprocessor as a controller, as well as allowed all knob settings to get saved in computer memory and recalled by simply pushing a button. The Prophet-5’s design soon took over as the new standard inside the electronic keyboards industry.
The adoption of Musical Instrumental Digital Interface (MIDI) because the standard for digital code transmission (allowing electronic keyboards to get connected into computers along with other devices for input and programming), and also the ongoing digital technological revolution have produced tremendous advancements in most elements of best electric piano keyboard, construction, function, quality of sound, and cost. Today’s manufactures, including Casio, Yamaha, Korg, Rolland, and Kurzweil, are now producing an abundance of well-built, lightweight, versatile, great sounding, and affordable electronic keyboard musical instruments and definately will continue to accomplish this well to the foreseeable future.